Design and microfabrication of multifunctional bio-inspired surfaces

Ghio, Simone (2018) Design and microfabrication of multifunctional bio-inspired surfaces. PhD thesis, University of Trento.

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In this thesis, we used CMOS-like technologies to produce improved, hierarchical multifunctional bioinspired surfaces. Different natural surfaces have been surveyed including well-known lotus leaf, sharkskin, back of the Namib Desert beetle, butterfly wings, and legs of water-walking insects. The lotus leaf features superhydrophobicity, which leads to low adhesion and self-cleaning. Sharkskin is composed of ripples that manage to reduce skin-friction and thus drag resistance. The Namib Desert beetle, harvests water from the heterogeneous pattern having hydrophilic/hydrophobic bumps on his back. Butterfly wings have re-entrant structures that manage to reach superhydrophobicity from a hydrophilic substrate. Hairy legs of water-walking insects are superhydrophobic with low adhesion that allows them to fight and jump on water. In chapter 1, we have undertaken a review of bioinspired surfaces that emulate the abilities of such natural surfaces. Then, in chapter 2 we have described the innovative CMOS-like techniques used for generating several hierarchical and re-entrant microstructures. Chapter 3 depicts the analysis of surfaces with hierarchical structures generated with a fast and easy process; this latter forms a second hierarchical level composed of random pyramidal elements using wet etching. Surfaces realized with this process manage to reach remarkably high contact angle and low contact angle hysteresis. Additionally, in this chapter we have introduced an analytical model to study the stability of Cassie-Baxter state over Wenzel state for these hierarchical surfaces. In chapter 4 the fabrication and analysis of surfaces composed of controlled hierarchical levels, which combine sharkskin with single-level lotus leaf-inspired pillared structures are reported. These particular hierarchical surfaces are demonstrated to hold high superhydrophobic properties along with low skin-friction. The superhydrophobicity of these surfaces has been characterized in a series of tests on an inclined plane. The data extrapolated from this measurement was used to evaluate the total dissipated energy of the sliding drop. Combining the data collected during this experiment with contact angle and contact angle hysteresis measurements we propose a global parameter that evaluates the superhydrophobic “level” of a surface. Furthermore, in chapter 5 similar hierarchical surfaces have also been tested for water harvesting together with single-level pillared surfaces that feature heterogeneous chemistry with hydrophilic/hydrophobic spot on every single pillar. In chapter 6 a series of tests have also been performed on butterfly-inspired surfaces. Although the substrate of such surfaces is hydrophilic, thanks to the re-entrant structures the surfaces reach high level of hydrophobicity. An implemented mathematical model and experimental test confirm the stability of this hydrophobic state. In chapter 7, we describe two sets of surfaces inspired by the hairy legs of water walking insect the first is composed of stretchable pyramidal-pillars and the second of truncated-conical silicon pillars. The ability of sharp structures to easily detach from water surfaces is exploited to change the contact angle value of a water drop deposed on this fast type of stretchable micropatterned surface. A mathematical model has been implemented and experimental tests have been carried out to evaluate the stability of the water-air composite interface on both types of microstructured surfaces. In particular, in the polymeric surfaces elasto-capillarity seams to influence the metastability of the Cassie-Baxter state.

Item Type:Doctoral Thesis (PhD)
Doctoral School:Civil, Environmental and Mechanical Engineering
PhD Cycle:30
Subjects:Area 02 - Scienze fisiche > FIS/02 FISICA TEORICA, MODELLI E METODI MATEMATICI
Area 02 - Scienze fisiche > FIS/01 FISICA SPERIMENTALE
Uncontrolled Keywords:Superhydrophobic, Bioinspired, microfabrication
Funders:Fondazione Bruno Kessler
Repository Staff approval on:11 Apr 2018 11:50

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